Olin C. Bailey Library

Watson Fellowship - Hendrix Procedures & Information

Procedures at Hendrix College

The on-campus deadline for seniors interested in applying for the Watson will be Friday, September 30 by midnight.  Email your personal statement and proposal, as well as any ancillary materials (budget and contact list) to Britt Anne Murphy.  Each senior who submits a proposal will have a 15 minute interview with the Honors Committee in the following weeks.  The Honors Committee will then select up to four candidates and help them prepare their proposals for the Foundation’s deadline, which this year will be Wednesday, November 9.  A representative from the Foundation has traditionally come on campus the first or second week of classes of the spring semester to interview each candidate for an hour.  The Watson Foundation announces awards via its web site by mid-March.

Contact Britt Anne Murphy for more information (450-1288 or murphyb@hendrix.edu).


Proposal & Personal Statement

The Watson Fellowship is a Wanderjahr – a year in which you explore interests while immersed in other cultures.  As described by the foundation, the heart of the application is two documents from you: a personal statement and a project proposal.  “The proposal should describe your plan for a 12 month fellowship year, including a description of your proposed project and details on how you intend to carry it out.  In addition, you should include information about what it is that prepares you to undertake your project.”

“In your personal statement, you should discuss how this is your project – how it reflects your talents, concerns, and commitments.  It may include a description of your background, your college years, your professional goals and aspirations, and your reasons for seeking a Watson Fellowship to undertake your project.”  These should reflect your passion for the subject.  Neither of these two statements should exceed five double spaced typewritten pages, although it should feel like you could easily fill 10 with all the neat, exciting things you know.


Watsons are difficult to conceive and write.  This idea must involve a year long, creative experience outside of the United States (and no, you cannot come back unless hideous things happen).  The cornerstone of your proposal is an idea that excites your interest and expands your experiences.  This is one that you have been involved in before.  It is expected that you will feel passionate about your subject, create a study that allows “conversation” with other cultures, and have planned a methodology including local contacts that makes this study possible.  Feasibility is an important factor...how "doable" is the project, based on your language abilities, personality, and experience? 

A word of caution: your proposal must be well written and concrete.  Back up your plans with methodology, know why each location is vital to your program (having back-up locations is prudent in case of unforeseen complications).  Ask questions that you can get answers to, contact local people who will allow you to access the information.  Submitting a budget and list of contacts is strongly recommended.  Be sure to have a mentor or colleague critic your proposal carefully for you. 

Hendrix Watson Fellowship Home Page


Last Modified on 10/24/2022